St. Louis used a whirling spin move to beat Corey Crawford for the only goal of the shootout, giving Tampa Bay a 4-3 win against the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday night and ending the Lightning's four-game losing streak.
The six-time All-Star, who also scored during regulation, spun in front of the net, set himself and flipped a backhander past a stunned Crawford in the second round of the shootout. It was only his sixth goal in 28 career attempts.
"I find I have more success when I go have fun with it. I feel like if I try to keep it simple, I beat myself," said St. Louis, who used similar moves during the NHL's SuperSkills competition in January.
"I was just thinking about the All-Star Game. There is no pressure, and I just got out there and did some funky stuff ... and I got a good result. I was trying to do something similar to that."
Steven Stamkos, who hit the post on a similar move in the first round of the shootout, scored his 42nd goal of the season. Teddy Purcell also scored for the Tampa Bay, helping build a 3-1 lead before the defending Stanley Cup champions roared back on goals by Patrick Sharp and Jonathan Toews.
Dwayne Roloson made 28 saves for the Lightning, then stopped Toews, Patrick Kane and Marian Hossa in the shootout, keeping the Bolts within two points of Washington in the race for first place in the Southeast Division.
"It's a huge win," St. Louis said. "We've been playing pretty good hockey, we just haven't gotten the results. ... This time of year, it's all about results."
Chicago ended 0-1-1 in a two-game swing through Florida following a season-best eight-game winning streak. The Hawks are off until they visit Washington on Sunday afternoon.
Stamkos got Tampa Bay off to a fast start with just his second goal in the last 13 games. After Kane tied it, St. Louis ended a four-game drought by scoring with 16 seconds left in the period.
Purcell put the Lightning up 3-1 at 1:20 of the second period with his first goal in seven games. It was just the second time in 10 games that the Lightning, who fell out of first place in the Southeast Division during their four-game skid, scored more than two goals.
Sharp's 34th of the season at 9:39 of the second period pulled the Blackhawks within a goal. Toews, who had a nine-game points streak stopped against Florida, had assists on the Blackhawks' first two goals and tied it 3-3 by beating Roloson 3:30 into the third.
"It's tough because we worked really hard to get back in that game," Toews said of the loss.
The Blackhawks were resilient after falling behind, but Lightning coach Guy Boucher felt his team was, too.
"I congratulated them because there's a big difference between being scared to lose and acting on it and being hungry to win," Boucher said. "That's an attitude, and it's not just in regulation time. It's not just in overtime. It's in the shootout, too. You've got to push, and if you fail, you fail."
A poor first period cost the Blackhawks in a 3-2 loss to Florida that stopped Chicago's winning streak on Tuesday night. The Panthers scored three early goals against Crawford, who gave up three more in the first 22 minutes against Tampa Bay.
"We were down by two and they had a lot of things going for them early in the game," Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. "I thought we chipped away and did what we had to do. It would have been nice to get two (points) at the end
Material from team media and wire services was used in this report
|Steven Stamkos (42) ASST: Martin St. Louis (53), Brett Clark (16)|
1 - 0 TBL
|Patrick Kane (23) ASST: Jonathan Toews (39), Patrick Sharp (29)|
1 - 1 Tie
|Martin St. Louis (25) ASST: Steven Stamkos (39), Adam Hall (8)|
2 - 1 TBL
|Teddy Purcell (16) ASST: Victor Hedman (21), Simon Gagne (12)|
3 - 1 TBL
|Patrick Sharp (34) ASST: Jonathan Toews (40), Patrick Kane (37)|
3 - 2 TBL
|Jonathan Toews (28) ASST: Niklas Hjalmarsson (6), Brent Seabrook (34)|
3 - 3 Tie
|1||V. Lecavalier||J. Toews|
|2||S. Stamkos||P. Kane|
|3||M. St. Louis||M. Hossa|
|Power Play %||17.6%||18.8%|
|% on Road||19.5%||14.8%|
|% at Home||15.8%||22.9%|
|Steven Stamkos Delaying Game-Puck over glass|
|Tomas Kopecky Hooking against Brett Clark|
|Niklas Hjalmarsson Delaying Game-Puck over glass|